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Processing and exploration of CT images for the assessment of aortic valve bioprostheses

Abstract : The aim of the study was to assess the feasibility of CT based 3D analysis of degenerated aortic bioprostheses to make easier their morphological assessment. This could be helpful during regular follow-up and for case selection, improved planning and mapping of valve-in-valve procedure. The challenge was represented by leaflets enhancement because of highly noised CT images. Contrast-enhanced ECG-gated CT scan was performed in patients with degenerated aortic bioprostheses before reoperation (in-vivo images). Different methods for noise reduction were tested and proposed. 3D reconstruction of bioprostheses components was achieved using stick based region segmentation methods. After reoperation, segmentation methods were applied to CT images of the explanted prostheses (exvivo images). Noise reduction obtained by improved stick filter showed best results in terms of signal to noise ratio comparing to anisotropic diffusion filters. All segmentation methods applied to the best phase of in-vivo images allowed 3D bioprosthetic leaflets reconstruction. Explanted bioprostheses CT images were also processed and used as reference. Qualitative analysis revealed a good concordance between the in-vivo images and the bioprostheses alterations. Results from different methods were compared by means of volumetric criteria and discussed. A first approach for spatiotemporal visualization of 3D+T images of valve bioprosthesis has been proposed. Volume rendering and motion compensation techniques were applied to visualize different phases of CT data. Native valve was also considered. ECG-gated CT images of aortic bioprostheses need a preprocessing to reduce noise and artifacts in order to enhance prosthetic leaflets. Stick based methods seems to provide an interesting approach for the morphological characterization of degenerated bioprostheses.
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Qian Wang. Processing and exploration of CT images for the assessment of aortic valve bioprostheses. Signal and Image processing. Université Rennes 1, 2013. English. ⟨NNT : 2013REN1S081⟩. ⟨tel-00925743⟩

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